UK Parliament Seeks Evidence Of NDA Harm To Women In Music Industry

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The UK Parliament’s Women and Equalities Committee announced it is inviting written evidence from people within the music industry who have signed or have experienced non-disclosure agreements that relate to cases of gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment or abuse.

The invitation is part of the committee’s inquiry into misogyny in the music industry as it seeks to “understand the extent to which NDAs are used specifically to silence victims,” according to an Oct. 31 announcement.

The committee reports that MPs have been told the use of NDAs in the industry is widespread but that the legal agreements themselves prohibit potential witnesses from coming forward and sharing details.

“However, Parliament’s powers of privilege mean that sharing details of an NDA with the Committee cannot be used as evidence in legal proceedings, and therefore direct legal action cannot be taken against a person for sharing the information,” the committee writes.

To protect the privacy of those responding, evidence received will not be made public.

Specifically, the Women and Equalities Committee seeks written evidence regarding the prevalence of NDAs to silence victims of gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment and abuse in the music industry; motivations for creating and signing an NDA; circumstances of individual NDAs and the roles, including employment status, of those involved; whether efforts were made to report inappropriate behaviour before an NDA was reached and whether NDAs were used in cases where behaviour might be criminal.

The committee seeks written submissions by Nov. 20, which can be made through an online portal or by email. Women and Equalities Committee staff members can provide advice to anyone considering submitting evidence and can be contacted via email at [email protected].

More information, including specific submission instructions and a link to the portal, is available at the Women and Equalities Committee page of Parliament’s website.